These things have I spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. John 15:11
One of the biggest scripture mysteries is how Jesus could be both a man of sorrows (Isa. 53:3) and at the same time be anointed with gladness (Heb. 1:9) Yet, both statements are true and unless we remember each side of His nature, we miss the complexity and beauty of our Lord.
For me, it is easy to remember the pain, but recalling the God-man also laughed is a stretch. Yet, growing up in a home with six siblings, He certainly knew about jokes and giggles and by His own testimony He was filled with joy. Best of all, this happy side is something Jesus wants to share with us. He said He would give us joy that would “remain” rather than evaporate with every change in circumstance and the key to experiencing it was in the words He had just spoken.
What were those words? A commandment that we love each other and assurance that power to love would be provided from a source outside ourselves. We don’t have to work up feelings of love, we work instead at remaining connected to Him and become conduits of God’s love rather than our own generators.
When we experience His love flowing through us, we become more light-hearted because we don’t have to depend on ourselves. Our hope becomes more vibrant because we see with an eternal perspective and our attitude becomes more positive as we give others an opportunity to join in the celebration of love. What’s more, even if they refuse to continue the love-song, we have pleased our Lord and that is enough to be happy about.